Just as God filled the ancient tabernacle and temple with the glorious cloud of His holy presence, He desires to fill us, as the Church-Bride, with His holiness, that He might “make her an altogether glorious Church in His eyes. She is to be free from spots, wrinkles or any other disfigurement – a Church holy and perfect.” (Eph. 5:27 Phillips)
God fills us with His holiness through Christ’s salvation, but the upkeep of holiness depends solely on us. It is absolutely necessary, as Paul persuades, that we “Pursue a godly life.” (1 Tim. 6:11a NLT)
What does God expect of us?
As God said to Israel through Moses, “So now Israel, what do you think God expects from you? Just this: Live in His presence in holy reverence, follow the road He sets out for you, love Him, serve God, your God, with everything you have in you, obey the commandments and regulations of God that I’m commanding you today – live a good life.” (Deut. 10:12 Masoretic Text)
Solomon said, “Here is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey His commands, for this is the duty of every person.” (Eccl. 12:13 NLT)
We no longer reverence God enough to keep away from the infectious things that defile us.
Paul said “the old man” is dead, crucified with Christ on the cross (Rom. 6:6). Unfortunately, after becoming a new creation in Christ, that old man has a stubborn propensity for coming back to life and sneaking return visits.
We have the Light of Christ living within us to help us live a Godly life, but if we allow our carnal side, (which, by the way, translates as meathead), to rule us, we will continue to walk in darkness.
Light and darkness can never be homogenized, though many never cease trying. Paul said, “I don’t really understand myself, for I want to do what is right, but I don’t do it. Instead, I do what I hate.” (Rom. 7:15 NLT)
If we attempt to allow the light and dark to struggle against each other in our heart, it causes us to have an inward turmoil of two masters. We then experience what I call the Rebekah Syndrome.
The disciple John cautions, “Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him…For the world offers only the lust for physical pleasure, the lust for everything we see, and pride in our possessions. These are not from the Father.” (1 John 2:15 NIV, 1 John 2:16 NLT)
Oh, my! Longing for and loving things of the world displaces my love for the Father. Allowing duplicity to move into my heart, I will have an inward turmoil of two masters, and I will then experience what I call the Rebekah Syndrome.
When Rebekah, Isaac’s wife, found out “two children struggled with each other in her womb,” (Gen. 25:22 NLT), she asked God, “If this is right why am I this way?” (Gen. 25:22 Masoretic Text) The Lord answered her, “Two nations are in your womb.” (Gen. 25:23 NKJV) (Where is Your Heart?)
There it is. Two different fellowships in our heart desiring our full attention.
How do we fix that? We focus on the Lord and do as Paul urges, “Dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” (2 Cor. 7:1 NKJV)
Do we allow the world’s temptations to vie for our heart’s attention? Or do we spend time sitting at the Lord’s feet as Mary did, just to be near Him, to serve Him in worship by pouring out our thanks and tears as fragrant oil upon His body?
So, do you have dueling personalities?